Judge temporarily halts Oahu trash shipments to Washington state

SPOKANE, WA (HawaiiNewsNow) - US District Court judge Edward Shea issued a temporary restraining order on Thursday, denying Hawaiian Waste Systems to ship trash to Washington state.

The Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation are suing because they believe that the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) did not adequately analyze the environmental impacts that Hawaii's garbage may have on Washington.

Hawaiian Waste Systems plans on shipping thousands of garbage bales to Washington's Roosevelt Landfill as a solution to avoid the need of expansion of the Waimanalo landfill on Oahu's Leeward side. The waste company has said that they have developed a process where each garbage bail is checked carefully and that a 8-layer wrapping seal creates a toxic situation where all living organisms eventually die within days.

According to court documents, an environmental analysis that was conducted in May failed to engage any specifics regarding the impacts that the trash shipments would have on Washington's ports, road travel and the Roosevelt Landfill.

Roosevelt Landfill is located near the tribes hunting, gathering and fishing grounds. The Yakama Nation argue that without thorough analysis, invasive species from Hawaii will contaminate the tribes environmental resources and logging industry.

Thousands of garbage bales remain at Campbell Industrial Park and have been for there for the past nine months. The issue will taken up again in a hearing on August 30th in Yakama, Washington.

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